Business tips from the Finally Fast team
One must negotiate in all walks of life. The key to successful negotiations is actually to remember that everything is negotiable, and if you want a deal, you have to look for one. Although many entrepreneurs feel that negotiations usually result in one party feeling like they have “won”, it doesn’t have to be this way. Effective negotiation can produce an agreement that meets the needs of both parties while preserving the business relationship. Here are some tips for win/win negotiations.
Focus on People
Always keep the issues separate from the people involved. Make sure each party understands the other’s perception of what is involved and needs to happen. And always listen actively and speak to be understood, not to argue a particular position.
Focus on Interests
Behind each position lie compatible interests as well as conflicting ones. Put yourself in the other person’s shoes in order to identify interests.
Focus on Options
Work with the other party in order to generate a variety of options. Look for areas of agreement; you’ll find them through your shared interests. Look for ways to dovetail differing interests; explore options that are of low cost to you and high benefit to the other party, and vice versa.
Power comes from Planning
Power comes from preparation and planning, not trying to overcome others. Do all necessary research, think of possible outcomes, rehearse what you will say and set goals. Have an agenda and stick to it as closely as possible.
Remember the other party’s needs
When you reach an agreement on something, take the time to summarize it. This allows both parties to recognize that progress is being made.
Have the right attitude
Be strong, yet not predictable. Keep others interested by staying ahead of them. This way, they have something to look forward to as the negotiation proceeds. Nonetheless, stay friendly and open. If the other party makes an impossible demand, be quiet and reflect on it. Soon enough, the other person will realize that he or she has “crossed the line” and will probably withdraw.
Do your homework. Use the Internet and other sources to learn about the issue at hand.
Ask questions. The answers and information can lead to an agreement.
Don’t be intimidated by “industry-speak.” Always ask for clarification.
Cultivate the use of calculated silence; it may impel the other party to offer a concession.
Realize that it’s a state of uncertainty, so take it one step at a time.
Stick to your plan, yet be flexible, and look for unexpected opportunities.
Do your homework and be prepared to respond to any question.
Keep up your self-esteem and confidence, even when things get difficult. If it’s not working out, maybe it’s not the right time.